Harleys Don't Hold Their Value

I just received an interesting comment on my previous post about Yamaha's New Star Raider ... At those prices, these ain't yer dad...

I just received an interesting comment on my previous post about Yamaha's New Star Raider...
At those prices, these ain't yer daddy's yamaha!! Waaay too much for a bike that will bevalue instantly - unlike a harley which is minimal if any.
I'm sure he meant "devalue" not "bevalue".

Harleys don't hold their value anymore. I'm not sure they really ever did.

Take Dale Frank's example...

He bought a brand new 1200C Sportster last July. He still owes $14,000 for it. Now, he wants a bigger bike, and checked out the NADA Book value. It's only worth $6,000!


Albeit, we're talking Sportster here, not Road King.

On the other hand, I previously wrote about a guy I know who's been trying to sell his Anniversary edition Road King, and can't do it. It seems like he's had it up for sale for a year now. It's fully loaded with chrome, 16" apes, even comes with a limited edition factory paint set. $18,000. No one has bought it.

If you consider the amount of money he's put into it, he's already lost money! The reason why it hasn't sold, is because the price is too high.

Is it more correct to say that Harley's hold their value better than metric cruisers? I'm not convinced of that either, at least not anymore. I think there was a time when that was true, but not now.

I think we're past the "Harley fashion craze" as of this year. People still like Harleys, but now the craze has matured into riding, touring, and attending rallies, instead of just buying Harleys as fashion statements.

We have the home mortgage industry to thank for that. Those who wanted a Harley just for the bling value found themselves putting their bike up for sale, or getting repo'ed altogether. Meanwhile, those of us who stuck around did so because we discovered that riding is fun.

As a result, the Motor Company is now faced with marketing their bikes to people who actually know something about bikes.

If you want to buy a Harley, buy it because you like the bike. Don't buy it thinking that it's a better investment.


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